Friday, June 26, 2015


I've been going to physical therapy twice a week for a while now, and each time I go, I have the privilege of catching glimpses of other peoples' stories. I see patients come into physical therapy with one leg, others shaking all over, many limping. I do not have a cast and my pain isn't very visible, but it is there. However, seeing and talking with the patients that come into physical therapy helps me to be more grateful. I have two legs that work, two eyes that see, a heart that beats. There are so many patients that I see coming into the Clinic for much more serious problems than mine.

I think in many different aspects of our lives, we forget to be grateful. In a world where we are told that what we have is not enough, it can be difficult to feel content with what we have and who we are. As a missionary, I realized how little I really needed to be happy. I didn't have a smartphone, I never went on the internet except to email my family once a week--we used beat up maps and an old phone to get around and contact people. And it was one of the happiest times of my life.

Irene--a woman we taught in Zoetermeer. 

My progress is slow, but it is still progress. Looking back to when I first came home, even, I see a big change.

I remember in high school, I was working on a big watercolor painting of a poppy. I was working on the finishing touches to make sure it was just right. My art teacher kept coming by and telling me that I was done with my painting and that it looked great, but I kept telling her that I had something else to fix still. Finally, she said "Nikki, go to the other side of the room and close your eyes." A little surprised, I did as she said. Then she told me to open my eyes. I saw my art teacher holding up a beautiful and finished painting. That experience has taught me so many lessons, and one of them is to take the time to step back and appreciate what you do have instead of always focusing on our own imperfections which we know so well.


  1. Hi Nikki, I hope you continue doing well. I was in the hospital after a near fatal car crash for 47 days. Two broken legs, amputated toes from my foot and 5 weeks from turning 21. I had to endure more than I thought I ever could. When I went back to life as I knew it would have to be, I was a much better person to myself and importantly to the many doctors and other patients I met. They felt sorry for me but what I learned from them through their misfortunes was invaluable. The experience gave me a new life. I can tell you that I understand your pain and what your life has become...for now. With time, faith, family and your unbelievable strength from your belief you will too see yourself as a new person. I think of you often and hope you are well. You can do it! Sue

    1. Thank you Sue, you are so kind. I am still learning and growing from these experiences, and I know that the strength I am building is not just physical, but spiritual, emotional and mental as well.